Too painful

[Bahasa Indonesia]
Have you ever prayed or dzikr (invocation) the whole time you listen to a friend’s story? I have. Yesterday afternoon.

I called a friend to ask how she was doing and why she did not come to our discussion session last weekend. She gave me a long answer. And the whole time, I could not say anything but prayed.

“It was too painful (physically) to go,” she said. Ouch.

My friend suffered from cancer years ago. Her cancer is no longer there, but the treatments she received throughout the years have damaged her body for life.

She is honestly one of the toughest person I know.

Once another friend recommended her to listen to this spiritually soothing music to ease the pain. I answered for her, “I think we cannot talk to her about pain. She knows more about pain than you and I put together.”

Yesterday was no different. The voice was just as positive and vibrant, though always with a vague taste of irony. She told me about the treatment she has been receiving lately. The medical doctors have given up on her, so she went with alternative (faith) healing.

The most recent one is somewhere in Central Java. She took train to the nearest town and got on another bus to get to the healing center.

The treatment was, to my mind, incomprehensible. My friend is as logical as I am. So I know how desperate she must have been if she has decided to take it.

“Let’s meet this weekend,” I said, “I’ll come to your place.”

“You are very welcome to come. Saturday morning I am doing my batik course but not sure whether I am strong enough to go this week. Call me first,” she answered lightly.

She stayed silent for a second or two and continued, “No, wait, I need to go to hospital to get my morphine injection this weekend. I am afraid it has to be the next weekend then.”

This weekend or next. Or the weekends after. I’ll come. I’ll make time.

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